Every day, we’re reminded we live in paradise.
With a perfect Mediterranean climate, easy access to pristine beaches, and beautiful hiking trails that span across the Santa Ynez mountains - it’s no wonder why Montecito continues to rank as one of the best places to live year after year. Aside from Montecito and Santa Barbara’s natural splendor, our tight-knit and safe community is known for its respected school district, attracting those seeking family-friendly neighborhoods from across the world. With so many fun things to do outside of the classroom, where do you even start?
Our team got together and compiled a list of our favorite local family-friendly picnic spots for your endless summer:
Toro Canyon Park
Tucked into the Montecito hillside, discover a spectacular open space unfolding over 74-acres. Packed with amenities like BBQ grills, picnic tables, equestrian trails, hiking, several playgrounds, and horseshoes - this park is Montecito’s quintessential hidden gem. Sneak in a hike up to the mountaintop for expansive panoramic views, or take the kids for a picnic on one of the sprawling lawns by the playground.
Relax into a south-facing cove (that many Santa Barbara tourists don’t know about!) for a perfect day at Miramar Beach. Great for paddle boarding and watching surfers ride the point, we can’t think of a better place to view the sunset from the sand. With parking in the neighborhood nearby, or along South Jameson Lane, this beach wins for our easiest paddleboard and picnic location - just get burgers to go from the Miramar Hotel food truck!
At over 200 acres, Santa Barbara’s Elings Park is the largest community-supported non-profit public park in America. A beautiful gathering place for sports, concerts, and special events, visitors can participate in a number of things to do! The park features baseball diamonds, two soccer fields, tennis courts, an amphitheater, hang/paragliding, a BMX track, picnic areas, and a playground, along with some of the best vistas in town.
A local’s beach that sits just south of Butterfly, Hammonds invites visitors to stroll through tide pools and look for sand crabs. Jump rock-to-rock at low tide, count sea creatures, and see how many seashells you can find! The long, dreamy, bougainvillea-lined pathway, from the end of Eucalyptus Lane is an added bonus.